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Generic Name

lactobacillus(LACT o bah sill us)


Trade Name

Lactinex is available as Granules and Tablets.
This drug is not available in a generic form.


What is lactobacillus?

Lactobacillus is simply dried bacteria that occur naturally in unpasteurized whole milk. The bacteria is harmless. The human colon normally contains over 400 different bacteria which provide many health benefits. Very occasionally, a bad bacteria may show up and cause health problems. The purpose of this bacteria is to replace the bad bacteria with a gentle harmless one.


What is it used for?

The FDA regards this product as a “food supplement”. It has never been proven scientifically to be a benefit in any health condition. Still, some physicians will use it when a GI infection or diarrhea occurs in the hope that a change in the colon bacteria will help.


How do I take it?

Follow your physician’s instructions carefully. The granule packets should be added to or taken with cereal, food, milk, fruit juice or water. Tablets may be chewed and each dose should be followed by a small amount of milk, fruit juice or water. Store this product in the refrigerator but do not freeze. Keep all medications away from children. Never share your medications with anyone else.


What do I do for a missed dose?

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and return to your regular schedule. Do not double up on this medication.


Are there interactions with food or beverages?

There are no known interactions of lactobacillus with food or beverages.


Are there interactions with other drugs?

An interaction generally means that one drug may increase or decrease the effect of another drug. Also, the more medications a person takes, the more likely there will be a drug interaction. There are no known interactions with any medications.


Is there a problem if I have another disorder or disease?

At times, a drug may have a different or enhanced effect when other diseases are present. At other times, the drug may worsen or effect another disease. This product can be taken with just about any health condition.


What about allergies?

People who have known allergies or asthma may be at an increased risk for a reaction from any new medication. The physician should always know a patient’s allergy history. Signs of an allergic reaction are skin rash, hives or itching. Of course, a person should not take lactobacillus if there has been a previous reaction to this or a similar product or if you are allergic to milk.


What if I’m pregnant, considering pregnancy or breast-feeding?

Most females now know that, if possible, no drug, including alcohol, should be taken during pregnancy or lactation. The potential danger, of course, is an injury to the baby. However, some drugs are much safer than others in this regard. So, the FDA has a grading system for each drug which reflects what is known medically. It ranks drugs from A, where medical studies show no evidence for danger to the fetus or mother, to B, C, D and X, where the medical evidence indicates that the risk to the fetus outweighs any benefit to the mother. Lactobacillus is not ranked. Lactobacillus, however, is dried milk bacteria which should not cause health problems for pregnant or nursing females. Always consult your physician before taking this or any drug during or when planning pregnancy.


What are the effects on sexual function?

There are no known adverse effects of lactobacillus on sexual function.


Are there other precautions?

If you are allergic to milk or sensitive to lactose, you should avoid the use of lactobacillus.


How long is it safe to take lactobacillus?

Unless directed by your physician, do not use for longer than two days or in the presence of a high fever.


How about side effects?

Adverse reactions can occur with any drug, even over-the-counter medications. Some of these are mild such as a stomach upset, which may be avoided by taking the medication with food. Minor reactions may go away on their own but if they persist, contact the physician. For major reactions, the patient should contact the physician immediately. There are no known side effects of lactobacillus.


A physician’s comment…

Lactobacillus is basically a very safe product to take. Even though there is very little scientific information available to support its use in any condition, some people and physicians feel there may be benefits. So it generally doesn’t hurt to try it except perhaps to your pocketbook.